Polar A3 Heart Monitor – For the Serious Trainer
Serious training needs serious monitoring to get the maximum benefit, and the Polar A3 heart rate monitor provides exactly that. It has an excellent mix of features suitable for a serious athlete, combined in a flexible and easily used package.
For the latest Polar models, check out the wider range of Polar Heart Monitors.
Focus of the Polar A3 Heart Monitor
The focus of the Polar A3 heart rate monitor is giving you numbers to go with the sweat, and the burning in your lungs and the amount of time you spend training. The system works with a chest band that monitors your heart rate and transmits wireless to a slim and fashionable wrist unit that covers distance traveled, time and stopwatch functions and more.
Comfortable to wear, the polar heart monitor series has a solid set of features beyond the basics. Some of the more important ones are described below.
The A3 polar monitor uses a wireless ECG system, so there's no wires to thread to the receiver unit; the system uses an encrypted handshaking protocol, much like Bluetooth headsets, so that other wireless units won't create crosstalk or interference.
The wrist unit has a large, easily read LCD display; and the buttons are designed (like any other Polar monitor) to be used on the run. Nothing blows a workout quite as much as having to stop running to fiddle with your gear.
The unit is water resistant to 20 meters, and is highly customizable, with programming options for setting heart rate limits, defining fitness goals, setting exercise times and more. It can report peak and average heart rate for a workout, and show time series for several workouts, as well as the usual watch functions. It will even remind you if you miss a workout.
Ease of Use
The A3 Polar heart monitor is designed for serious use, but that doesn't impede their ease of use in any way. The documentation is well done, and the unit gets excellent reviews for its easy to navigate functionality. There's a calibration period where you adjust it to your stride lengths and enter some biometric data, so it can calculate how much work you're actually doing.
The programming on it is geared for users who want to hit a certain exercise zone, to be in peak physical condition for a specific event or time. It's especially helpful for workouts designed to keep your heart rate within certain boundaries, and if you're an endurance athlete, it's an excellent tool for helping you reach peak performance.
While suitable for people who are aiming for peak performance, the Polar heart monitor hasn’t completely forgone people who are just starting out. The device also has an excellent 'step up' procedure; you can program it to tell you when to move your workouts to the next level by how easily you're maintaining a given heart rate; it's sort of like having a fitness coach on your wrist encouraging you to push for the next level.
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